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Block 81 is a design studio producing beautifully crafted websites and brands for independent businesses and startups.
May 29, 2018
You’re active on social media and have a killer website. Logo and slogan are perfect. What else could you possibly need to create an irresistible brand?
User experience is the next level when it comes to branding. After all, you need something to help your brand stand out from the rest.
UX focuses on going beyond marketing or a two-dimensional brand and creates a true experience that shifts your brand into 3D. However, you have to focus on UX throughout your entire branding strategy.
Before you can understand why UX is key for all elements of branding strategy, you have to understand what UX encompasses. It’s still a confusing concept since there isn’t one definitive definition. However, the main focus is to improve overall customer loyalty and satisfaction by creating something that’s easy and enjoyable to use.
UX becomes clearer as 15 different experts share their own definitions. As one expert puts it, UX happens whether it’s intentional or not. It’s always better to create an intentionally good UX versus an accidental bad one.
As you might have noticed, most of those definitions apply to product, web or app design. The Nielson Norman Group’s definition is much broader and works well to describe how UX applies to branding. Their definition states UX includes “all aspects of the end-user’s interaction with the company, its services and its products.”
In short, UX is the experience a user has when interacting with your brand in any way. Even something as simple as a pleasant landing page or an app that loads faster than the competition help create a positive UX for your consumers.
Consumers are being bombarded with social media posts, blog posts, brands, apps and more all vying for their attention every single day. What makes them choose one over the hundreds or thousands of other options thrown their way? The experience the brand creates.
It’s nothing new that brands are struggling to grab consumers’ attention when attention spans seem to be getting shorter all the time. However, this can also work in a brand’s favor.
By crafting an experience through engaging content, personalized interactions (product recommendations, personalized newsletters, etc.) and easier to use sites/apps, brands not only grab attention, but keep it. They want to feel like a brand values their time. When a brand works to create an experience, it shows that consumers’ needs are a priority.
Consumers crave experiences because they stand out and they’re memorable. Having a great product is only half the battle. You have to a positive UX to ensure consumers take notice.
The next step is figuring out how to incorporate UX into your branding strategy. It’s actually not as difficult as it may sound. It all starts by understanding the UX process, which takes you from idea to testing to launching your strategy. UX Mastery breaks the process into five main areas:
While Prototypr lists six main steps, both process styles are similar. The main goal is to first work to understand your target audience. Second, beta test a few ideas to see if you’re creating the right experience or not. After a series of research and testing steps, you’re finally ready to finish the design and launch your strategy.
While UX is key, you’ll often hear UX as it applies to branding called brand experience. Think of brand experience as the interaction between two strangers. A positive brand experience creates a bond between the two strangers. A negative experience causes the two to go their separate ways.
The exact process for creating a positive brand experience differs for every business, but a few things to keep in mind include:
The single most important way to create brand experience is to design your entire branding strategy around making your target audience happier. After all, if your consumers are happy, they’re far more likely to buy from you over the competition.